Faculty meetings => EdCamp. PLCs => EdCamp. Early Release/Late Arrival => EdCamp. Workshop Days => EdCamp. All PD = EdCamp. #EdCamp4AllPD

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#Whatif boring faculty meetings turned into variable, flexible spaces where teachers got to collaboratively problem solve issues that were pressing them?

#Whatif agenda-driven meetings that could be communicated via email were transformed into learning environments that could be theme based and focused on improving instruction, assessment, and/or curriculum?

#Whatif top-down leadership in schools was replaced with a distributive leadership model?

#Whatif it wasn't that hard to do?  What's stopping you?

Using the EdCamp model for ALL professional development creates a level of community ownership of the school's professional learning.  Faculty meetings; PLC times; district-driven workshop days... etc.  All PD could be structured around an EdCamp framework that puts the core user (the teacher) at the... well... core.  PD shouldn't be decided upon the top of Mt. Administrator; it should be decided upon democratically by the people to whom it most directly effects: the teachers.  

For an example of how this works, look at the October 2015 workshop day for the HS in my district (edcampdrhs.weebly.com).  We did this, and the feedback was so overwhelmingly positive and powerful, that there is no going back now.

To #ReImaginePD, we must first understand who controls PD now.  It is mostly in the hands of the administrators.  Let's put it into the hands of the teachers using an empathy-fueled, teacher-centered model: the EdCamp.


For more info on EdCamps, go to www.edcamp.wikispaces.com, or www.edcamp.org

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Photo of Margaret Powers

This sounds great! I wonder what happens when you run into a sticky or complex topic that no one in the group has an expertise in? If a cohort of teachers has never used design thinking before but wants to dive deep, how do they get that initial exposure and hands-on learning?

Photo of Matthew Drewette-Card

Part of the expectations would be that each "session" would have an agreed upon facilitator and recorder. If the topic is lacking in expertise, then it becomes up to those folks to lead the session in a discovery-type activity. I was in an EdCamp session once about using Minecraft in education, and NO ONE in the room knew anything about it. By the end of the hour, the 20+ people in the room has collected resources, connections, & information to bring back to their buildings. Having clear expectations & "exit tickets" with a "what's next" focus can help make this PD work.